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  • Hi All

    I was looking for scroll saw tips when I found this site. I have enjoyed reading all the post. I am brand new to scroll sawing. I had a little bit of experience in wood shop in the 8th grade but that was 50 years ago. I am now retired. While I was working as a construction surveyor there was never any time to pursue a hobby. So as far as woodworking goes I am brand new at it and need lots of help. I am counting on you guys.
    Chuck Houston, TX

  • #2
    Hi Chuck,
    Welcome to a great place. I'm sure you will get lots of advice (some of it excellent!) and plenty of comaraderie (sp?) - or friendliness.
    Again, welcome.
    Sandy
    PS What kind of saw do you have?
    And what sorts of things do you think you want to saw?

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    • #3
      Wecome aboard Chuck, you came to the right place. Lots of good advice here. Happy scrolling, Mick.
      Mick, - Delta P-20

      A smile is a small curve that straightens everything out.

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      • #4
        Howdy Chuck, hang in there I just started some months ago and once the basics are acheived you'll start suprising yourself in what you can do. Visit the forum often, there are alot of helpful and talented folks here ready and willing to help.
        Todd

        Hawk G4, Dremel 1800

        Quando Omni Flunkus Moritati

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        • #5
          Thanks for the Welcome

          Sandy,Mick,and Todd thanks for the welcome to the board. I have been sawing for about a week now. Decided to start with a Sears Craftsman 16" variable speed saw. Looked at more expensive saws but decided to go with the low end until I decided whether or not I really liked scrolling. The saw seems to work just fine but seemed to be breaking a lot of blades. I finally got smart and called Sears Help line. They were very helpful and assured me that I had a good saw. Seems I just couldn't understand there instructions for installing pin end blades. I still don't don't know if I have the blade tension set right. I have read that you should tension the blade until, when the blade is plucked, it should be at a high C. I am tone deaf and don't know what a high C should sound like. Are there any other ways of determining proper blade tension? I have been setting it to where it takes a good bit of pressure with one finger to bend the blade an eigth of an inch side ways. I am not sure of what direction I will take as far a sawing goes. I have seen a lot of patterns of fret work that I would like to try someday.
          Chuck

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          • #6
            Chuck.....just tension the blade until it sort of "pings" when plucked with a finger. You will become more accustomed to blade tensioning as you gain experience with the saw. The amount of tension will vary depending on the size of blade you're using and the thickness and species of wood. Don't try to force the wood into the blade....let the saw do the work. Also, the patterns for small detailed fretwork will be a problem for pinned blades due to the size of the hole required to thread the blade through the stock. I'm not familiar with the craftsman saws and don't know if they accept pinless blades. Welcome to the board and happy scrolling!!
            If it don't fit, don't force it....get a bigger hammer!!

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            • #7
              Chuck,
              Sounds like you have a start, anyway. If it takes quite a bit of pressure to bend that blade 1/8 inch, that sounds like a bit too much. Try backing off a bit. You don't have to be musical - just sort of pluck it, and if it no longer sounds dull - but has a bit of "boing" to it, you are getting there. If the blade deflects a whole lot when you try to make turns, tighten it. If it breaks, do the next one a bit looser. A good blade ought to last you through a coupla hours cutting, unless you're cutting really thick or hard stuff. Make sure you have them so the little teeth point down.
              Does your saw offer an option so that you can use the pinless (plain end) blades? If it does, that would be greatly to be desired. You then have a whole lot of good blades to choose from, and you can do very fine detail (as soon as you learn to control your hands). Mike's Flying Dutchman blades are the best I've tried yet. He posts on here, (Mike D ) or find him on the net under flying dutchman. (I think he only has the pinless type)
              I also highly recommend the book "Scroll Saw Workbook" by John Nelson - Check your local bookstore, or Fox Chapel's website (www.foxchapelpublishing.com )- or your local library - but this is one you'll want to own eventually - John gets you going just as if he were there in your shop with you, guiding you through the learning curve.
              Good luck, and let us know how you're doing.
              Sandy

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              • #8
                Whoops!! That shoulda been Mike M for pinless blades. He posts on here as 3M. Sorry!
                Sandy

                Comment


                • #9
                  I have a craftsman

                  Hi bladebreaker !! I have a craftsman 21 inch and you are setting your tension to tight ... I learned by trial and error that on the craftsman you dont have to set the tension as tight as you would on other saws -- yes I have another saw i bought at a pawnshop for $34.-- great saw till I broke the table ... the pinless blades are hard for me to get tight enough on my craftsman and I use a hex screw on the bottom one and use a socket to tighten and a wrench I use for the top - I have MS and dont have the strength to tighten so I go the easy route for me...If you use a dremel you can use a 1/16 inch drill bit in it and make youe pilot hole small enough to get the blade in and you wont have any raindrop lines .. be sure to have a backer board on your project when you drill and be sure to sand the back.. then I take a sharpie and dot the holes that would otherwise be hard to see.. I like the spiral blades and the #.2 for cutting but in a pinch i use a # 5 okay but I can't turn as sharp..Hope this helps ya === you do have a great saw you just have to learn it is easier than you think.

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                  • #10
                    I was going to post a reply but it has all been said before by wiser scrollers than me. So welcome aboard. Have fun making sawdust
                    CAЯL HIRD-RUTTEЯ
                    "proud member of the best scroll sawing forum on the net."
                    Ryobi SC180VS scroll saw EX21

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Thanks for all the friendly advice. I have gotten a lot of ideas from going way back and reading past posts. Sharon, it was good to know that someone else has a craftsman saw. I was breaking blades when I first started sawing beacause I was using pinned blades and tightening them down with the thumb screw. According to people at the sears helpline this is what was causing my blades to break. I took the thumb screws out when using pinned blades and no more broken blades. When I started using pinned blades the first one wouldn't stay in when I tensioned the blade. I cleaned the blade holder with lacquer thinner. Sanded down the ends of the thumb screws. I then cleaned the blade ends with lacquer thinner and sanded the ends lightly. So far so good. The pinless blades stay put. The only other problem I had was when I would turn the variable speed way up there was a loud knocking noise. The people at the sears help line told me to increase the blade tension and it should stop. I increased the blade tension and the noise lessened so I kept increasing the blade tension and it finally stopped. Since doing this I have had no more broken blades. The only bad thing about the saw is that it is very noisy when running it at its maximum speed of 1600spm. It is fairly quiet when running about 1000-1200spm. Sharon I am glad to hear that you are into scroll sawing despite the fact that you have MS. I had a friend and also a cousin that had MS.
                      Chuck

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                      • #12
                        Silly me--- I forgot to tell you

                        I was going to tell you how to tell your tension and forgot to--- sorry .. when you have to replace your blade make your tension knob loose --turn yours to the left-- and realse the tension switch ( thats that red thing in the middle of the tension knob ) if you are using pin end you need to take the red wing nuts off _ those are for pinless blades and insert your pin end blade simply by placing in the slots --make sure your teeth on your blade are pointing down --now lock your red tension realse ( push it back down ) then tightnen your tension knob to the right just till it gets pressure on the turning .. now turn one more turn ... thats the setting I usually use and it works good for me ..But if you spring the tension relase without turning the tension down you will hear a pop noise -- this may not be good for the blade but i d rather turn a turn than break a blade.. if your saw has a little rattle when it is on then turn the tension a turn more... these are great saws and really easy to use once you get the hang of it ... now go buy you some plain end blades and have fun --- these take practice too but i load the bottom one first and loosen only the top to move my piece -- works real good that way ====== Happy Sawing

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                        • #13
                          Hey chuck glad to meet ya----

                          turn your speed down -- it works better and you 'll have more controll if you use lower speed.. besides you can follow the lines better slower...

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